Inquiring California minds are looking to Illinois where the governor, Pat Quinn, is asking for $8.75 Billion to pay down bills:
Gov. Pat Quinn says Illinois’ books were so neglected for so long that the money isn’t coming in fast enough to repay billions owed to schools, doctors, mental health centers and other providers.
So during his budget speech Wednesday, Quinn is expected to push a plan to borrow $8.75 billion to help alleviate the pressure.
The idea is to use the cash infusion to whittle down the bill backlog from a mountain to a molehill and rush payments to the 36,000 vendors owed an estimated $7 billion. The loan would be paid back over 14 years using money generated by a portion of the income tax hike.
“We have to do this,” Quinn said. “The state should pay what it owes small businesses and schools and many other employers across Illinois. It will keep men and women working and add to the employment ranks.”
What’s the money for? Basics…
Some providers have been waiting as long as six months to be repaid by the state, continuing a cycle that has led some to lay off workers, cut services and stretch their credit to stay open. Quinn has tried to channel their frustrations into a lobbying campaign, asking those owed money to contact lawmakers to support the borrowing plan.
Quinn’s budget office has acknowledged that the borrowing still isn’t enough to cover everything the state owes.
“We actually wanted it to be a bigger number because our needs and our pressures are greater,” Malcolm Weems, chief of staff in Quinn’s budget office, told a Senate committee last week.
It’s a cash-flow problem. Weems said the state doesn’t just owe money to those who have contracts to provide services, but must also pay for state employee health insurance costs, send tax returns to corporations and give municipalities across the state a cut of tax revenues. A Quinn budget spokeswoman said those costs could top $4 billion.
The question should be: Where is the money should have been there for these basics? This is prima facie evidence of criminal mismanagement. The people who were in charge during this malfeasence need to be rounded up, put on trial, convicted, and sent to prison. If they aren’t then it might be time for scene in the movie where the peasants go fetch their pitchforks, axes, and torches.
Are you listening California? Especially Jerry Brown, the State Assembly, public employee unions, and the even the electorate. This three ring circus is coming to you very soon.
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